Given a $q$-ary frequency hopping sequence set of length $n$ and size $M$ with Hamming correlation $H$, one can obtain a $q$-ary (nonlinear) cyclic code of length $n$ and size $nM$ with Hamming distance $n-H$. Thus, every upper bound on the size of a code from coding theory gives an upper bound on the size of a frequency hopping sequence set. Indeed, all upper bounds from coding theory have been converted to upper bounds on frequency hopping sequence sets (\cite{Ding09}). On the other hand, a lower bound from coding theory does not automatically produce a lower bound for frequency hopping sequence sets. In particular, the most important lower bound--the Gilbert-Varshamov bound in coding theory has not been transformed to frequency hopping sequence sets. The purpose of this paper is to convert the Gilbert-Varshamov bound in coding theory to frequency hopping sequence sets by establishing a connection between a special family of cyclic codes (which are called hopping cyclic codes in this paper) and frequency hopping sequence sets. We provide two proofs of the Gilbert-Varshamov bound. One is based on probabilistic method that requires advanced tool--martingale. This proof covers the whole rate region. The other proof is purely elementary but only covers part of the rate region.

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